Bears

What happened to Bears running back-by-committee, run-based offense in Week 1?

What happened to Bears running back-by-committee, run-based offense in Week 1?

One weekly amusement — or bemusement — with the Bears offense of Marc Trestman was how the weekly commitment to running the football was typically gone by halftime, sometimes by the end of the first three-and-out series, regardless of score.

So it was curious that the Bears of John Fox, which ran the football a respectable 46 percent of their offensive snaps, last Sunday in Houston called nine running plays to 16 pass plays in the first half. The result was a 14-10 halftime lead with the help of a 54-yard completion to Alshon Jeffery and a 19-yard TD pass to Eddie Royal.

Running back Jeremy Langford had eight of the nine first-half rushes, Ka’Deem Carey one, and Carey would get none at all in the second half. Langford managed a paltry 2.8 yards per carry, not the kind of production that sustains a run game ultimately.

In the second half Langford upped his production to 3.9 yards per carry, with nine rushes. Carey, the other half of the “committee” that Fox has traditionally favored for his backfields’ approach, did not see the football.

Meanwhile, the Bears were calling 20 pass plays in the second half, four of those ending in sacks.

“I thought the first part of the game, the first half, we did what we needed to do,” said offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains. “Second half, I didn't think we got as many opportunities. I think that comes from not converting on third downs and lack of execution in the second half.”

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The Bears did convert just two of eight third downs in the second half.

But Loggains’ may have contributed to the mounting troubles in the second half with play-calling. The Bears gave the ball to Langford on seven consecutive first-down plays in the second half, which netted five, minus-1, 15, seven and four, six and minus-1.

While the commitment to the run might be found in that kind of play selection, the potential for predictability was obvious.

Fox, however, indicated that some of the problems lay, not with Loggains nor a newly formed offensive line, but perhaps with Langford not getting what was there for the getting. Langford himself acknowledged that he needed to do more with what the offensive line created for him.

“Well, I think we blocked up some runs pretty well,” Fox said. “That’s not an easy defense to run against, but I think there were some yards there, yards after the carry, I mean, yards after contact.

As far the non-committee approach, “I think the fact that we only ran it 20 times,” Fox said. “[The Texans’] per carry was 3.7, just like ours. The difference was they ran it 35 [times],we ran it 20, so the time of possession, that usually plays into that.”

Vegas sets Mitchell Trubisky’s pass TD total at 26.5

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Vegas sets Mitchell Trubisky’s pass TD total at 26.5

If Mitchell Trubisky has the kind of break out year in his second season under Matt Nagy that Bears fans are hoping for, he should have no problem cashing an OVER 26.5 passing TDs ticket for bettors who want to back him.

Per Bet Chicago, Caesars is rolling out division props and they set Trubisky’s touchdown pass total for 2019 at 26.5 and his pass yard total at 3,744.5.

While both those marks would be career highs for Trubisky, this number will surely be seen as a slight by the hometown fans and continue to add to the polarizing nature of the quarterback formerly known as the Pretty Boy Assassin.

In Chicago, and if you’re team Mitch, this number is ridiculously low and you’re probably already pounding the over.

Outside of Chicago, and with some analytical support, there’s a lot of doubt about Trubisky’s future as a viable option as an NFL starter, so I’d guess the Pro Football Focus crowd is probably gonna take the under.

We rolled out some props of our own on the Under Center podcast last week including:

Will Mitch Trubisky pass for 10 or more touchdowns than Craig Kimbrel has saves? (Including playoffs for both)

26.5 regular season passing touchdowns probably gives Kimbrel the edge, but it’s right in range. 

And that Trubisky – Kimbrel prop prompted this bold response from our own Bears insider JJ Stankevitz:

I don’t think I’m in the 40 club with my guy JJ, but the OVER certainly feels like the move here. At least it better be if the Bears are gonna make any sort of NFC North title defense. 

 

Former Bear Greg Olsen randomly walks into marriage proposal, catches whole thing on video

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Former Bear Greg Olsen randomly walks into marriage proposal, catches whole thing on video

Scenario: you're walking down the street and randomly walk into a marriage proposal. What do you do?

For former Bear and current Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen, the answer was to capture the magical moment on video. 

Olsen was in Nashville this week to give a keynote speech at a healthcare conference. While walking back to his hotel on Thursday, he randomly stumbled into a marriage proposal. His first response: hit record on his phone and capture the whole thing on video.

"Did she say yes? I got it on video, dude," Olsen said emphatically. "I'm going to send it to you!

"She said yes and I got it all on video, and you don't even know me, but I'm going to send it to you."

The couple, according to the Panthers, is Max Harvat and Brooke Hartranft. The two were visiting Nashville for the week, but Harvat didn't necessarily plan the proposal. It was as much of a sporadic moment for him as it was random for Olsen.

"Oh my god, you're my hero," Harvat said to Olsen after the proposal.

As it turns out, Harvat grew up a Panthers fan. However, he had no idea that Olsen was the person recording the proposal in the moment, only happy that someone caught it on video. When he stood up, he realized who the mystery man was.

“When I stood up, I looked over and I started having a mini heart attack," Harvat said to panthers.com. "I was like, ‘I’m 90 percent sure that’s Greg Olsen from the Panthers!’

“I'm a huge Carolina fan. I was like, ‘Oh my God, you're telling me that Greg Olsen just recorded the whole thing?’ I was so excited. It was amazing."

The moment wasn't just special for Havrat and Hartranft, though.

"It's the best thing I've ever witnessed," Olsen said in the video.

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